Sunday, January 24, 2010

In Favre We Risk

Though the majority of the Vikings-Saints game was a demonstration of playoff fragility in the form of butterfingers (well, mostly for the Vikes RBs), that was a hell of a game. Tough to watch at times, tense beyond belief at others, but in the end, the type of hair-pulling, heart-breaking, down-to-the-wire game you want to see this late in the football season.

This was my immediate post-game thought posted on Facebook: "Rough loss for Viking-nation. Granted, I was just pulling for them because of Favre, but that was just one of those games where the gods of football just didn't want a team to win. Truly, that should have been a blowout. Without the TOs, the Vikes roll. But the defense kept them in it and proved that the Saints get too much credit. The Vikes lost that game, the Saints didn't win it."

The Saints, for all their pre-game-offensive-juggernaut-hype were playing scared. That and they were matched up with a superior, more confident opponent in the Vikings. I'm not rah-rahing for the Vikings here, just look at the final numbers: Total Yards - Saints, 257 to the Vikings, 475. The story was in the turnovers: Saints, 1 to the Vikings, 5. Granted, the turnover factor is huge in deciding an outcome and proving a teams composure. But come on, something wasn't kosher with what was happening with the Vikings' RBs – 6 fumbles! Ridiculous. Adrian Peterson has a fumbling problem, but he doesn't send the football afoot as often as what happened Sunday night.

And that last Favre interception, well, that was the gunslinger in him trying to make something happen late in a game when he should have played it safe. I've always known this about No. 4, and it's why I love the guy – he goes for it. He doesn't settle for playing it safe, and at times, that's definitely to his detriment. But don't hate on the guy too quickly. He's the catalyst for making that Vikings offense go. He played the same crucial role with the Packers and Jets in his previous seasons. And this much is certainly true: without Favre behind the O-line for the Vikings this year, that team doesn't even make the playoffs. Tavaris Jackson and Sage Rosenfels would have played them into an early offseason. Favre made that team what it was. My friend Sean Spencer put it well: You live by the Favre, you die by the Favre.

You know what this means though, don't you? Favre is going to seriously consider playing another season because there's no way in hell he's going to meander peacefully into the NFL afterlife (retirement) with his last throw being an interception that blew his chance to go back to the Super Bowl. Favre Watch 3.0 starts now.

Oh, the frustration of coughing up yet another NFC Championship game. Photo: NY Times.

1 comment: said...

Well said. I was on the couch with my grom holding my breath and we were thinking, "Plead don't throw an INT, please don't throw and INT..." But we had a feeling... Farve is actually starting to turn into a tragic Shakespearian-type character. I can't imagine the thoughts that will be running through his head this off-season.